Bill Cosby And Roman Polanski Expelled From Academy of Motion Pictures Arts And Sciences
The Board of Governors took a vote this week to revoke the membership of Cosby and Polanski.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Board of Governors has made the decision to expel Bill Cosby and Roman Polanski from membership this week.
At a scheduled board meeting the decision was made to remove the comedian and director a week after Cosby was found guilty of three counts of aggravated indecent assault.
Polanski, on the other hand, has been living in exile for 40 years after pleading guilty to statutory rape in 1978. Even still Polanski won the Academy Award for Best Director in 2003 for The Pianist, though he didn't attend the ceremony he still received a standing ovation.
Polanski's film Based on a True Story premiered at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival out of competition however its distributor, Sony Pictures Classics, removed it from its scheduled 2018 release.
The board released a statement regarding the decision:
"The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Board of Governors met on Tuesday night (May 1) and has voted to expel actor Bill Cosby and director Roman Polanski from its membership in accordance with the organization’s Standards of Conduct. The Board continues to encourage ethical standards that require members to uphold the Academy’s values of respect for human dignity."
Speaking to Variety, Polanski's attorney Harland Braun believed the decision went against the Academy's new code of conduct. "It seems to be wrong to just expel someone and make a decision without knowing all the facts," Braun said.
The new standards of conduct were introduced in December last year, months after the accusations against disgraced producer Harvey Weinstein came to light.
"There is no place in the Academy for people who abuse their status, power or influence in a manner that violates recognised standards of decency," the code read.
Prior to Cosby and Polanski only two other members have ever been expelled from the Academy, Weinstein late last year and a character actor named Carmine Caridi in 2004.
Caridi had his membership revoked after it was discovered he was lending his Oscar screeners around which resulted in films being leaked online. Caridi was the first person to ever be expelled from the Academy in 2004.
Featured image: Getty Images.